BRWF 2016 Workshops

The 2016 Bellingen Readers & Writers Festival is pleased to present a wide variety of workshops covering memoir, fiction, non-fiction, poetry, digital writing, publishing, dialogue, thrillers, world building, learning writing from reading, and writing and performing spoken word.

Get in early as it is expected that many of these workshops will sell out quickly.

The workshop may be cancelled if minimum numbers are not reached.

 


INTRODUCTION TO MEMOIR with Lee Kofman

Lee Kofman
Friday 10 June
10.00 – 12.00pm
Youth Hub Room 1, corner Church and William Streets, Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 9, maximum 15)

Whether your life has been full with exotic adventures or ‘only’ with the ordinary challenges of going through the usual rites of passage, there’s bound to be something fascinating about it. That’s why the contemporary memoir—everyday people telling their stories—has become such a popular phenomenon. With Lee Kofman, author of five books including The Dangerous Bride: Memoir of Love, Gods and Geography (Melbourne University Press 2014), come and learn some of the basics of this writing genre: how to find the right theme, how to structure your life story, how to turn yourself and the people in your life into compelling characters and how to seduce your readers by writing about your life vividly, using fiction writing tricks. www.leekofman.com.au
Lee Kofman bio

 


LEARNING WRITING FROM READING with Annette Marfording

Annette Marfording

Friday 10 June
10.00 – 12.30pm
Small Room, Bellingen Library, Hyde Street Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 8, maximum 10)

Important aspects of good writing include beginnings, voice, using all five senses, metaphor and simile, original and vivid detail and more. In this workshop Annette Marfording will point to and discuss some great examples in Australian writing that achieve these elements brilliantly. Practical exercises based on these examples will fuel participants’ imagination.

Annette Marfording is a writer, broadcaster and critic. She has been writing since 2001. She created a program on Australian writers and their work on radio 2bbb FM, which now broadcasts monthly. She was Program Director of the Bellingen Readers and Writers Festival until 2015. Her book Celebrating Australian Writing: Conversations with Australian Authors features 21 in-depth conversations with Australian authors on their books, central themes in their body of work, writing methods, central tips for aspiring writers and more. All profits from the sale of the book go to the Indigenous Literacy Foundation.
Annette Marfording bio

 


FICTION WRITING MASTERCLASS with Jane Messer

Jane Messer
Friday 10 June
10.00 – 4.00pm
Uniting Church Hall, near of St Andrews Church, Hyde Street, Bellingen

Cost: $70 / $50 concession (minimum 12, maximum 15)

Whether you are writing short stories, creative non-fiction or a novel, there comes a point when you need critical input into your process and the work itself. This workshop is for emerging writers who have been writing for some time, have a specific project underway and wish to engage in a more critical level of discussion about the writing process.
This hands-on, practical workshop will include self-editing and writing, feedback and a discussion of short samples of your work.
Participants will need to do some reading prior to the workshop. PDFs of these short readings and a list of what to bring will be sent to you by Jane Messer before the workshop: please email Jane Messer once you are registered.
Jane Messer is a novelist and lecturer in Creative Writing at Macquarie University. Her critically acclaimed novels include Hopscotch, Provenance and Night by Night. As a teacher of creative writing she has been awarded a national Office of Learning and Teaching Citation for Excellence. She has also given talks and workshops to high school students and English secondary teachers (see Building Bridges to Higher Education at (Ways in to Writing Imaginatively – Dr Jane Messer – Youtube ).

Jane Messer bio

 


RETOOL AND REMIX: GET A DIGITAL LIFE! with Dr David Reiter

David Reiter
Friday 10 June
10.00 – 1.00pm
Large Room, Bellingen Library, Hyde Street Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 8, maximum 15)

Have you heard about people who dream in code and wonder what you’re missing? Are you confused about the difference between HTML, XHTML and ePub? Uncertain whether you should have a website, blog or a podcast to air your views as a journalist or freelance writer? Are you itching to team up with other artists to produce multimedia work, or finding out what skills you need to produce enhanced text works yourself? Then this is the workshop for you!
Dr David Reiter will provide an overview of the digital revolution now sweeping through the publishing and media industries as well as projects that you can create to be a part of it. He’ll also cover the key issues involved with electronic publishing and distribution and demonstrate some of the channels available to journalists, visual and audio artists NOW for publication on the internet and on portable devices including laptops, tablets and smartphones. google.com/+DrDavidReiter

Dr David Reiter Bio

 


DIALOGUE WRITING with Lee Kofman

Friday 10 June
2.00 – 4.00pm
Youth Hub Room 1, corner Church and William Streets, Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 9, maximum 15)
Well-crafted dialogue is crucial in both fiction and creative non-fiction works. It breathes life into the story, reveals characters in subtle ways and often provides comic relief. Yet writing believable dialogue is a tricky business. While we do not want to replicate the common tedium of everyday conversations, we also need to be careful not to make our dialogue sound contrived. Lee Kofman, author of The Dangerous Bride: Memoir of Love, Gods and Geography (Melbourne University Press 2014) and experienced writing teacher and mentor, will show you how to write dialogue that sounds lifelike, but is carefully constructed to illuminate characters and their relationships with each other, develop the narrative and entertain. www.leekofman.com.au
Lee Kofman bio

 


SELLING THAT BOOK with Dr David Reiter

Friday 10 June
2.00 – 5.00pm
Large Room, Bellingen Library, Hyde Street Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 8)
Thinking of self-publishing, or helping your publisher sell more copies of your book? In this PRACTICAL workshop, publisher Dr David Reiter, author of Your eBook Survival Kit, now in its 3rd edition, cuts through the myths to reveal strategies for ensuring your book has the best chance of selling out its first printing and beyond. Hear about the latest ways to publish in print and digital formats. Find out how to set up a master file that will allow you to easily adapt your book from print into eBook formats.
Learn about the key channels for promoting and; selling and your book via global distributors like Amazon, Apple, Google and Overdrive. Then, ask yourself, are you switched on to social media? Discover how to market yourself as a brand as well as an author by using the right channels to get the word out about your work. See what works and when in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest and how your postings can engage your audiences. google.com/+DrDavidReiter
Dr David Reiter Bio

 


GET YOUR POETRY PUBLISHED with Les Wicks

Les Wicks

Friday 10 June
2.00 – 4.00pm
St Andrews Church, Hyde Street, Bellingen
Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 9, maximum 15)

This workshop will give you a unique set of strategies for polishing and publishing your poetry. Les’ classes are known for their constructive and friendly orientation. This workshop will have an emphasis on the nuts and bolts of getting that poem out there. Everyone who so wishes will have their poems published in an established internet magazine. This approach is highly effective… combining practical information with an artistic dialogue among peers.
Les Wicks is an Australian poet who is known for his versatility on both stage and page. He has toured widely across the globe and seen publication in over 300 different magazines, anthologies and newspapers across 23 countries in 11 languages. His 13th book of poetry is Getting By Not Fitting In from Island, Australia’s oldest poetry imprint. Les has been involved in dozens of editing projects over 35 years and has conducted his popular, positive and accessible workshops from Hobart to Noosa, Texas to Perth. leswicks.tripod.com/lw.htm
Les Wicks bio

 


HOW TO WRITE ANYTHING with Mark Dapin

Mark Dapin
Monday 13  June
10.00 – 4.00pm
Uniting Church Hall, near of St Andrews Church, Hyde Street, Bellingen

SOLD OUT

In this workshop, Mark Dapin, an acclaimed novelist-journalist-columnist-historian teaches how to write fiction using the techniques of non-fiction; how to write non-fiction using the techniques of fiction; how to write memoir using the techniques of journalism; how to write journalism using the techniques of memoir – but, most of all, how to write confidently and well.

You can use the same simple techniques to help you write journalism, fiction, memoir and history. Mark practises all four disciplines – often in the same day.

You will learn how to describe both real and imaginary people, places and situations; how to avoid clichés and writing-by-numbers; and how to discipline yourself, pace yourself and force yourself to finish a task. There will be opportunities to discuss your individual interests and projects but, most of all there will be the chance to write under professional guidance and receive candid (but gentle) feedback. The tuition involves several practical exercises. By 4pm, you will have written as many words as most professional writers produce in their working day. If you could sustain that pace over three months, you could finish the first draft of a novel – or a memoir – by October. www.markdapin.com

Warning: this workshop includes several writing exercises.
Mark Dapin bio

 


WRITING AND PERFORMING SPOKEN WORD with Josh Donellan

JM Donellan Poet

Monday 13  June
10.00  –  12.00pm
Youth Hub Room 2, corner Church and William Streets, Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 9, maximum 15)
Bring your head (your own, not someone else’s), heart (ditto), verbal artillery (poems) and a sense of reckless adventure. This workshop will focus on both writing and performing spoken word pieces, looking at the difference between writing for page and stage, as well as finding your authentic voice. Whether you’re into Biggie or Byron, Dickinson or De La Soul this session will help you take to the stage with glorious, furious enthusiasm. A writer, musician, slam poet, radio DJ and teacher, Josh Donellan is one half of the electronic/theatrical performance duo “Poetry is Dead”. He believes the measure and cadence of language is important and has been known to replace a word because the rhythm is not quite right. www.jmdonellan.com

Josh Donellan bio

 


WORLD BUILDING with Lynette Noni

Lynette Noni

Monday 13  June
10.00  –  12.00pm
Youth Hub Room 1, corner Church and William Streets, Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 8, maximum 10)
In this two-hour workshop, author of the five-part young adult fantasy series The Medoran Chronicles, Lynette Noni helps writers understand how to develop “realistic” fictional worlds and fill them with characters that are truly believable. Whether magical or familiar, the worlds authors create need to be grounded by rules, just as the characters need to be relatable.
Whether set in modern day cities, rural wastelands, alien planets or underground fantasylands, fictional worlds need to be believed and understood by the writer and the reader alike. Offering an engaging teaching style and numerous writing activities, Lynette uses well-known literary examples as teaching aids in this interactive workshop, which is suitable for aspiring, emerging, or established authors.
Lynette Noni bio

 


WRITING FOR THRILLS with Graham Potts

Graham Potts

Monday 13  June
10.00  –  12.00pm
St Andrews Church, Hyde Street, Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 9, maximum 15)

The good guy always saves the world from the bad guy right? If you are ready to offer your readers new plot twists, this workshop will help re-invent the traditional thriller genre. Graham Potts will help define the scope of the world you wish to preserve and explore the motivations of the characters destined to save or destroy the day. Believable protagonists need flaws – discover how to introduce their idiosyncrasies via an intriguing yet manageable cast of secondary characters. By carefully weaving seemingly unrelated motivations – Hitchcock-inspired “MacGuffins” – you can make your thriller truly surprising.
Graham Potts bio

 


Tighter and sharper with Greg Barron

Greg Barron

Monday 13 June
2.00 – 4.00pm
Youth Hub Room 1, corner Church and William Streets, Bellingen

Cost: $40 / $30 concession (minimum 9, maximum 15)

This workshop from Australian author Greg Barron will help participants learn how to delete useless words, eliminate adverbs and tighten up their prose so it shines. It will also focus on using vivid detail and sensory description to immerse the reader and keep them turning the pages.

Aimed at beginner to intermediate writers, participants will discuss examples of prose styles from famous writers to show how clarity is a feature of all great work. Past workshops have also touched on some advanced word processing techniques and shortcuts.

Attendees would benefit from bringing a page or two of their own work along to the session, though this is not a prerequisite. gregbarron.com

Greg Barron Bio